An overview of current and potential use of information and communication technologies for immunization promotion among adolescents.
Information and communication technologies (ICT), such as the Internet or mobile telephony, have become an important part of the life of today's adolescents and their main means of procuring information. The new generation of the Internet based on social-networking technologies, Web 2.0, is increasingly used for health purposes by both laypeople and health professionals. A broad spectrum of Web 2.0 applications provides several opportunities for healthcare workers, in that they can reach large numbers of teenagers in an individualized way and promote vaccine-related knowledge in an interactive and entertaining manner. These applications, namely social-networking and video-sharing websites, wikis and microblogs, should be monitored in order to identify current attitudes toward vaccination, to reply to vaccination critics and to establish a real-time dialog with users. Moreover, the ubiquity of mobile telephony makes it a valuable means of involving teenagers in immunization promotion, especially in developing countries.
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